Thursday, 22 October 2009

On location #3

It's 6.30pm and I'm home already! It must be a miracle . . . or something went wrong!

Outdoor locations today. The best sort of filming. On Monday just gone the forecast for today had been pretty bad, and it was touch and go whether we would shoot at all today. But we held off on that decision, and thank goodness, as I awoke to blue skies and calm winds. The day looked so good that I thought it perfectly in order to bring out the V-twin motorcycle, Trigger, and turn up on set in style!

First location was the coffee shop/bar Negociants in Potter Row. There were several scenes here for two different sets of actors, and we had plenty of time to get it all in the can. The sun was streaming through the windows and the DoP was delighted with the shadows it cast across the scene.

Next stop was down by the sea on Portobello beach. This was carefully timed by the producer for low tide. The scene depicts one of isolation for a carer. A common event in their lives once they get heavily involved in caring for a person with dementia, can be that they lose the support and contact of once close friends and family, so this was the scene I wanted to depict visually.
We set it up with the actor in the centre and six other in a close circle looking in. We then tracked round anti-clockwise with the Steadicam.
The Steadicam equipment is a very clever invention. We are able to mount the camera on a special gimbal that is balanced in such a way we can move very quickly and achieve a very smooth and gliding shot.
As we moved around the circle, each time we passed a character on the outside we tapped them on the shoulder and they had to run behind the camera and keep running round as we went, leaving the central person all alone, isolated. This needed a few takes. The camera was close to the centre of the circle the people on the outer edge were having to run quite fast in order to stay out of shot, but we kept catching up with them and getting them in shot, desperately running. Good comedy.

Then it was lunch. Always a good time.

Next stop, George Square. It looked stunning in it's autumn colours, with the yellow, gold and red leaves now scattered over the ground. There were several scenes here, all of people out for a walk with just slight differences between them all. Last shot at this location was a close up, moving along a line of people in the woods, all stood still and staring into the camera lens as we went along. Great looking shot, except we were one actor down in the five we should have had. Unfortunately one hadn't been able to find us. We decided to shoot anyway, and the producer hopes to pick it up again at a later date with all five.

Final location was in the rear grounds of the modern art gallery, except we were well behind schedule and by the time we got there the light was failing and the gallery was closed! Another pick up shot another day. Good news; an early wrap!

That's the unpredictable nature of film making.

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